Friday, January 27, 2023
Friday, January 20, 2023
just before christmas my seester*, loree, stopped by and asked if i could help her make some dolls quilts for a doll bunk bed santa would be bringing her 3 year old daugther.
loree's called me before just before christmas wanting to know if i could make a stocking like the ones my mom made for everyone and i had to tell her no. the stockings would have taken me forever to figure out and i wasn't confident in my ability to make one.
but a doll quilt (or two) i could do.
we talked about possible fabrics and patterns. loree, like most members of my family, has really big ideas, and as she has no experience quilting, i had to keep reigning her in on what was feasible for me to pull off before the deadline.
she thought everything was cute and kept flitting around. "we just need a pattern. where is the book of patterns?," she said. i laughed out loud because there are a gazillion quilt patterns in the world, not just a single book of patterns.
and this was a doll quilt. for a very active little girls who's probably going to love and use them to pieces. we settled on a simple strips quilt using 2.5" strips and made plans for which day to assemble them.
she came over a few days before christmas and we got to work.
first, was fabric selection. i'd been thinking about the fabrics loree was drawn to, which were mostly light colored. i suggested we do something that would withstand the love they're going to get a little better, but she kept coming back to the low volume prints and i just gave in so we could get started.
at one point she started looking at my shelf of liberty tana lawn prints. "these are pretty!" oh, yes, they are. i was feeling very generous about the project but that's where i drew the line. "yes, those are really nice. they're my best fabrics. but everything on that shelf comes from london and costs $35/yard. i'm sorry but we're not using them for this doll quilt." she laughed out loud and totally understood.
we finally settled on fabric strips, mostly leftovers from my "collins" quilt, with a few butterflies thrown in because her daughter loves butterflies and they have a connection to our mom, an accomplished seamstress who passed away in 2018. we chose this ruby star society butterfly print (i think from "stay gold" by melody miller?) as a sort of feature fabric to use 3 times and give the quilt a little bit of cohesion. (that's the backing print in the upper right corner.)
before she left, she picked a backing, but not a binding. when i completed the simple straightline quilting, i decided on this cute amy sinibaldi polka dot print for the binding. for durability, i chose to machine attach the binding. i do despise machine binding! it went much better on the second one. i was cursing through most of it, wishing i could just handbind. but timing was of the essence and they need to survive a lot of rough play.
i had both dolly quilts completed by evening.
they got delivered in time for christmas morning and later that day i had the great pleasure of seeing my niece lovingly playing with her dolls, tucking them into their beds under the quilts over and over. she was at it most of the day.
that was sweet, but spending hours quilting with my seester was the best gift of all.
*all five us of sisters have double "e" names - hydee, loree, marcee, jodee, katee - which is why we call each other "seester."
Friday, January 13, 2023
2022 was not a big quilting year for me. i chose to focus on other things in my life, specifically a home we purchased that needs renovations and additions. this was a massive creative project for me and left no time for anything else. however, that project came to a halt in september and i picked up quilting again in the latter end of the year.
my 2022 instagram top nine by likes
i don't think a year has to produce a lot of finishes or even have a ton of quilting in it to be a successful quilting year. i immensely enjoyed the quilting i did get to do, worked on several projects i really like, moved a good handful of projects forward, and started some new ones i'm excited about. that's a good quilting year to me.
i began the year with a finish during the holidays in january, which was nice, but as it was only completing the binding on a project that had been around quite a while, it doesn't exactly feel like it's a quilt that belongs to this year. still, i finished off "guys and dolls improv quilt," which is my 50th full size quilt completed.
that does feel like something to celebrate!
when i started quilting in november 2010, 50 quilts seemed like an impossible number to ever reach. one stitch, one session of sewing, one completed quilt at a time and here i am. it doesn't matter a bit that it took 11 years to do it. they were quilts, after al!
in january i also helped a group of young ladies from church put together a charity quilt. when a youth activity i was in charge of had to be changed last minute, i pulled out several fabrics i was willing to part with (mostly heather ross bits that came in bundles of which i wasn't over fond) and had the girls assemble four patches. i thought because they were cute fabrics they'd make a cute quilt. however, the results have left me stumped as it feels like a halloween quilt with all the purple, orange, and black in it. i'll either adjust something or just finish it off soon and get it donated.
in february, my youngest, d5, and i went to quiltcon for a day to check out quilts and shop at the vendors. initially, she kept saying "blanket" instead of "quilt" while we were talking about the displays and i finally told her no child of a quilter should do that and she was embarrassing me, haha. all tongue-in-cheek, of course. it was a really fun day with my daughter, who was inspired by the children's quilt section to possibly submit her own work in the near future. i really enjoyed seeing the work of quilty internet friends in person, too.addictive crossroads blocks, at some point after march finishing the top.
in april, the house came on the scene. parts of it were recently renovated and it's as if the previous owners knew a quilter would be living here next. there are several quilty-style cement tiles on the property that i just love. but this is also when actual quilting came to a complete halt as i got involved in the design process for the additional work that needed to be done.
in may, my oldest daughter gave birth to my first grandchild. i'm smitten. he's a complete bundle of joy and we all adore him. i haven't made a quilt for him yet, but it doesn't feel wrong and there's plenty of time for that coming up.
this move was also noteworthy because my son took his mama-made quilt, star on the field, with him to college! this was all his own decision and it warmed my heart to no end.
i got a bee in my bonnet about d5 getting back to work on her "the pleasantest thing" quilt and we got it basted so she could quilt it, which she started doing.
while i was basting things, i decided to quickly baste a quilt for myself and got "liberty holly hobby" samiched together. (samiched is my lingo for sandwiched, quilt speak for when all the quilt layers are basted together.) i wanted to have handwork available. never mind that i have four other quilts in that phase. this one had a back already made and just wanted to be put together. plus, after months of no quilting, i was itching to do something with fabric.
things with the house had hit a bump in the road and i was doing some quilt therapy to deal with it. i pulled out a few other projects and did some little bits here and there.
then we officially put the whole house project on hold til the new year (long story). that's when i decided i'd had enough and was going to put quilting back in my life.